How to Blog from Abroad – part 1-

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So, you want to start your very own travel blog? The good news is that anyone can start one. The bad news is that being able to sustain a quality travel blog requires a lot of effort, a lot of investment and a lot of time. If you are serious about the task that you are about to undertake you should know a few things that we will be covering in the following article. But before we get down to business can you answer one question: Why do you want to blog?

Some people write because they desire to chronicle their adventures. Others do it because they want to share their experiences with the world. There also some who do it to help fellow travelers on their journeys. Regardless of your purpose, you should make sure that it is crystal clear before you start because it is the one thing that will strengthen your resolve despite all uncertainties.

If you want more than your family and friends to read about your travel and if you want to enthrall strangers, you have to go the extra mile. Travel blogging just about sharing experiences. A simple recount of your itinerary will not make a visitor stay. As a wise man once said, it’s the way you tell a story that really matters. With these things in mind let’s take a look at a few tricks that will help you get started with your travel blog.

What you should do Before Starting your Travel blog

Blogging requires careful planning. You can’t simply decide one day and start looking for hosting the other day. The truth is that travel is a difficult niche to blog on, and the only way that you will be successful is if you offer something truly unique.

#1 Research Other Travel Blogs

Our first recommendation would be to start reading other travel blogs (if you aren’t already doing it). This will give you a better idea about what works (and what doesn’t) in this industry. All you have to do is a Google search on the best travel blogs. Peruse the top 5 to 20 picks and try to write down the things that you liked about them.

#2 Choose your Travel Niche

Another thing that you need to do before you start is to choose your travel topic. One way to go around this is by exploring your possibilities. For example, can you travel to Asia or Africa? Are you the type to stay in luxury hotels or do you prefer off the beaten track locations? Niche travel is a much more realistic option for travel bloggers. By narrowing your scope you will be able to provide with unique information about various places and you will also be able to combine different interests such as photography and cooking with travel.

#3 Can you Capture your Adventures on Camera?

Speaking of photography, do you have the means of taking high-quality photos during your journeys? We will tell you from the get-go that very few travel blogs can survive without great imagery. Investing in an entry-level DSLR camera and owning a smart-phone capable of instagraming good quality images is extremely important.

“Improve your photography. Visuals are a very important part of blogging these days, especially in travel. Photos can immediately convey a sense of place.” – La Carmina for the Huffington Post

#4 Learn how to Sell Yourself

Lee Abbamonte is an extremely successful travel blogger who gave us some very sound advice. When asked about the thing that makes travel blog work he said:

„Don’t be afraid to ask for money, don’t be afraid to be told no, be relentless and aggressive, remember you are selling yourself at all times, so always be closing.”

Most travelers aren’t in it for the money. It takes at least half a year of sustained work and writing to attract a decent amount of followers and most of the money you will be earning might not cover your travel expenses.What do you do? Lee believes that travel bloggers should learn how to sell themselves to their readers. In other words, if you are creating amazing content that people like you must encourage them to support your future travelrs In the end, all the money invested goes back into the blog one way or the other.

Getting Started with your Travel Blog

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There are many things to consider when working on your travel blog, and it would be impossible for us to share them all in one article. This is why we will only be covering the basics of blogging from abroad. In this article’s sequel we will also be discussing about content marketing strategies, writing tips for evergreen and unique posts and organization tips that will make blogging constantly when abroad easier.

#5 Get Hosted & Choose your Platform:

There are several free blogging platforms that you can choose from (example: blogger.com, wordpress.com etc.). However, we recommend that you purchase your very own place on the web. This can be done through a hosting company and it is actually very simple. Once you have found a good host you can begin installing your platform.

WordPress is one of the largest publishing platforms of the moment. It comes with tones of plugins and optimization features, and it has an easy learning curve. Once you set-up your platform you can choose a theme, install some plugins (examples: Akismet, All in One SEO, Google XML Sitemaps, Photo Dropper, Contact form 7, wpTouch Mobile, Google Analytics, Feed Burner etc.) and you are ready to start writing!

The platform and hosting service that you choose for your new travel blog should also be easily accessible from different parts of the globe. This is extremely important as you will probably be moving a lot.

#6 Post Articles on a Regular Basis & Exercise Patience:

Fame usually does not come overnight. We believe that new travel bloggers should blog at least 5 times a week in their early weeks of blogging. Alternatively, if you have enough time to post lenghtier posts from your travels you should sit down with a cup of coffee and do so. Writing a lot will also help you develop your voice and attract like-minded people. If you know that you will be traveling to remote parts of the globe for longer periods you should also schedule some of your articles in advance.

#7 Reach Out to Fellow Bloggers:

As you can probably already imagine, it is not enough to write. You also have to connect with fellow travelers or writers. This can be done through various blogging platforms such as typepad.com and Blogger, or through social media channels.

#8 Maintain a Positive Attitude:

We can’t stress the importance of this issue enough. We know how frustrating it can be to write and have nobody read it. The problem is that it will take a while for you to gain some followership and in the meanwhile you have to create content that will make them want to read more about your travel. You should also take into consideration hate comments and complaints that will probably appear. Even failures can help us improve.

#9 Harness the Power of Social Media:

Even if you don’t have time to post articles every day this doesn’t mean that you can’t snap a quick photo of you riding an elephant. You can engage with your readers by showing them sneak pics during your travels to make them excited about your upcoming post.

#10 Be Descriptive:

Words such as ‚amazing’, ‚great’, ‚fascinating’ should have no place in your vocabulary. When you are describing your adventures you want to make people feel like they’ve been part of it and this calls for very specific descriptions. For example, don’t say that your food was very tasty, say that it tasted like velvety sweet chocolate. You want your followers to crave what you eat and dream about the places that you are visiting. Only then can you call yourself a good travel blogger.

BONUS – Know your Value & Track your Progress

At some point in your travel blogging career strangers will approach you in regards to advertisements or partnerships. When this happens you need to know exactly how much you value. Tracking the performance of your blog with tools such as Google Analytics or Webmaster tools is a great idea. This will give you a better idea about your progress.

This concludes our basic tips for blogging while abroad. Stay tuned for the following article which will discuss the problematics of travel blogging more in-detail.